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July 4, 2014

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HERITAGE FLORIDA JEWISH NEWS, JULY 4, 2014 PAGE 7A ,t clear-ey0000 anaiysis of 21.00,t. ce n b J]:y mti-S;emitism By Jeffrey F. Barken "Some of My Best Friends, A Journey Through Twenty- First Century Antisemitism," by Ben Cohen. Edition Critic (May 2014). 230 pages. columnist Ben Cohen&apos;s new book, "Some of My Best Friends, A Jour- ney Through Twenty-First Century Anti-Semitism," is a collection and analysis of previously published essays, reporting, and commentary that meticulously capture the current climate of anti- Semitism around the world. Throughout a turbulent, modern decade dominated by war and economic instabil- ity, the author consistently provides a fair and balanced perspective of the coalescing forces critical of Judaism and the state of Israel. Where there is unjustly founded and abhorrent hatred, the subject matter can be alarming, but Cohen provides clear-headed analysis of events and atti- tudes. His strength as awriter is to confront the language of public discourse, tracking the trajectories of creeping intolerance. Amos Oz writes: "Israel is a dream come true. As such, it is bound to be flawed and imperfect. The only way to keep a dream intact is never to try to fulfill it." The award- winning Israeli author arrived at this witty conclusion after traveling throughout Israel in the 1980s, a time when Israelis were still amazed by their own military success, and yet were increasingly uneasy about their collective future. Oz's notion, that an ideal stops being beautiful and is subject to criticism the moment it becomes reality, in this reviewer's estimation frames Cohen's collection. Modern anti-Semitism does tend to reveal itself amid condemnations of Israel. "I have long argued that we live in an age of Jewish empower- ment, distinguished by the existence of a strong Jewish State," Cohen acknowledges in his introduction. Conscious that resentful propaganda is taking shape in response to the Palestinian situation, a stalled peace process, disil- lusionment and assimilation in Diaspora communities, and as a consequence of the Sudoku (see page 14 for solution SUDOKU G RIALS R AIDIA AT:IIM D E ElM EY-'A K A SIH G L EIN C H RIO J E EIP i L ANIE S L_=jD violent Arab Spring, Cohen deconstructs the dialogue. The author uncovers in- stances where Zionism is confused with Judaism and where anti-Semitism lurks beneath the surface. The articles titled "The Courage of Ronnie Fraser," published in November 2012, and "How British Justice Failed Ronnie Fraser," pub- lished in March 2013, recount the controversy surrounding England's University and College Union (UCU), an anti-Zionist organization sympathetic to the plight of Palestinians. Beginning in the early 2000s, the group pursued an academic boycott of Israel, isolating Israeli professors and refusing to deal with Israeli institutions. Fraser, a Jewish mathemat- ics lecturer whose parents escaped Nazi Germany, spoke up about the discrimination he felt, causing a stir. "When the core themes of anti-Zionism are unmasked, the denial, uniquely to the Jews, of the right of self- determination, the portrayal of Israel as a racist, and, therefore, illegitimate state, the presentation of Palestin- ians as victims of a second Holocaust, and the use of the term Zionist as codeword for Jew--we move far beyond the domain of permissible policy criticism into open defamation," Cohen writes, analyzing the legal struggle that ensued. Indeed, insensitive remarks circulated throughout the hearings that stemmed from Fraser's complaint. When UCU commentators suggest- ed, "Any legal action (against the UCU) would be financed by those with bank balances from Lehman Brothers that can't be tracked," their speech indicated the ridiculous belief shared among their members that millions of dollars had, in fact, been transferred from the bank to Israel in the days prior to its failure during the 2008 financial crisis. The claim, of course, is false, but the tone of the statement re- vives old myths about Jewish wealth and money practices, perpetuating a dangerous anti-Semitic stereotype that is shocking in modern times. Cohen is correct. Poorly chosen terms and phrases, used recklessly in a context Answers from 06/27/2014 m m m MNO AAA N I R I10 F S HAY "ARN ION C k E lOAN CON IMPS LEAP LAVA DTER ERIE HKAS USTS AHAM RAME AILS KRAS Edition Critic The cover of Ben Co- hen's "Some of My Best Friends, A Journey Through Twenty-First Century Anti- Semitism." of constructive criticism, quickly devolve into hurt- ful rhetoric. In the words of Jean-Paul Sartre, "words are loaded pistols." Another problematic definition that Cohen con- fronts is the use of the word "apartheid" to describe the perceived unequal status of Palestinians in Israel. "What made the apartheid system peculiar (in South Africa, where the term originates) was the manner in which racism was enshrined in law," Cohen writes. "Through such measures as the Group Areas Act (1950), the Bantu Education Act (1953)... and the Prohibition of Mixed Marriages Act (1954) the apartheid regime microman- aged the lives of its subjects on the basis of their skin color... If apartheid is understood as the rule of racist law, any comparison with Israel--or any other country--needs to begin at the point of the law." Tellingly, there are no such racist laws on the books in Israel. Palestinians may feel discriminated against in their daily lives, but applying the term "apartheid" to describe their plight--as former U.S. president Jimmy Carter has done--significantly alters the meaning of that word. This is linguistic subterfuge, en- abling Israel's critics to hang a highly charged accusation on the country, while distract- ing attention from their own civil rights abuses and fueling perpetual animosity. Cohen diligently explores the battle of words and the rise of anti-Israel and "Jew baiting" propaganda. His reports on the incendiary flotilla campaigns organized by Turkey and Iran to chal- lenge the Israeli blockade of Gaza indicate that forces opposed to the existence of Israel as a sovereign nation will stop at nothing to create situations in which Jews are seen as the aggressors. "More than anything else," Cohen notes, "they (protesters) want to put Israel's defenders in the position of having to open fire so that images of Zionist brutality can then be broadcast around the world." The author is frustrated that Israel has been subjected to a double standard, forced to demonstrate rigid adherence to a moral code its neighbors mock. While fervent, some argu- ments grow redundant. But Cohen provides sound exam- ples of where anti-Semitism is either influencing a conten- tious debate or evolving out of charged discourse, and he high|ghts the challenges fac- ing nodern Jews around the work. Many people view the fulfil ed dream of a sovereign Jewish State as an utterly flawed entity. Their criticism is tolerated, if not welcomed by a democratic people--Jews in Israel and the Diaspora alike--but "Some of My Best Friends" reminds readers that the specter of anti-Semitism still haunts us in a modern era of intolerance and toxic rhetoric, laced with hatred. The best we can do is to re- main vigilant. Cohen's book provides quality analysis, and it is a worthy source. you could save 28%" Call 1-800-970-4376 to see how much you could save on car insurance. *NotiorY31 ore rage Qnnua sQvicIS based on dot<3 from customers who reported sawngs by switching to EsurQnce tween 12/1ill and 4/30/12 2912 Este :r'san _w.c , c A; ngh re,d CA Lcse  cvc-67s9 7 1 8 esuronce an AIIstate'cornpony 3 5 9 6 85 9 427 38142 453 6 98 7 9 8 4 73 5  StatePoint Media Fill in the blank squares in the grid, making sure that every row, column and 3-by-3 box includes all digits 1 through 9. Central Florida Synagogues Orhndo Weekday Morning Minyan (Conservative/Egalitarian), services Monday-Friday 7:45 a.m. (9 a.m.--national holidays); 2nd floor Chapel--Jewish Academy of Orlando; 851 N. Maitland Ave., Maitland. For information call 407-298-4650. Celebration Jewish Congregation (R), services and holiday sched- ules shown at; 407-566-9792. Chabad Lubavitch of North Orlando (O), 39 Skyline Drive, Suite 1017, Lake Mary, 407-878-3011,; services: second Friday of each month at 7:30 p.m.; every Saturday at 10 a.m. Chabad of South Orlando (O), 7504 Universal Blvd., Orlando, 407-354-3660;; Shabbat services: Friday, 7 p.m.; Saturday, 9:30 a.m.; services, Monday and Thursday, 8 a.m. Chabad of the Space & Treasure Coasts (O), 1190 Highway AIA, Satellite Beach, 321-777-2770. Congregation Ahavas Yisrael/Chabad (O), 708 Lake Howell Rd., Maitland, 407-644-2500;; services: Sunday, 9 a.m.; Monday-Friday, 7:30 a.m.; Shabbat services: Friday, 6:30 p.m.; Saturday, 9:30 a.m.; Family service, 4th Friday of the month. Congregation Bet Chaim (R), 426 Lakeport Cove, Casselberry, 407-830-7211;; Shabbat services: Friday, 8 p.m.; 2nd Saturday of the month, 10:30 a.m. Congregation Beth Am (C), 3899 Sand Lake Road, Longwood, 407-862-3505;; Shabbat services: Friday, 7:30 p.m.; Saturday, 9:30 a.m. Congregation Beth E1 (C), 2185 MeadowlaneAve.,West Melbourne, 321-779-0740; Shabbat services, 1st & 3rd Friday, 8 p.m.; 2nd & 4th Saturdays, 9:30 a.m. Congregation Beth Emeth (R), 2205 Blue Sapphire Circle, Orlando, 407-855-0772; Shabbat service: monthly, 8 p.m. Congregation Beth Israel (Rec), Collins Resource Center, Suite 303, 9401S.R. 200, Ocala, 352-237-8277;; Shabbat service, second Friday of the month, 8 p.m. Congregation Beth Sholom (R-C), 315 North 13th St., Leesburg, 352-326-3692;; schedule of services on website. Congregation Beth Shalom (Progressive Conservative), Orange City congregation holds services at 1308 E. Normandy Blvd., Deltona; 386-804-8283;; Shabbat services: Friday, 7:30 p.m.; Saturday, 10 a.m. Congregation B'nai Torah (C), 403 N. Nova Rd., Ormond Beach, 32174, 386-672-1174;; Shabbat services: Friday, 8 p.m.; Saturday, 10 a.m. Congregation Chabad Lubavitch of Greater Daytona (O), 1079 W. Granada Blvd., Ormond Beach, 386-672-9300; Shabbat services Friday, 7:30 p.m.; Saturday, 10 a.m. Congregation of Reform Judaism (R), 928 Malone Dr., Orlando, 407-645-0444; Shabbat services, 7 p.m. 1st Friday; 8 p.m., 2nd and 3rd Fridays; 6 p.m., 4th and 5th Fridays; Saturday: 10 a.m. Congregation Match Chaim (R), P.O. Box 060847, Palm Bay, 32906, 321-768-6722. Congregation Ohev Shalom (C), 613 Concourse Parkway South, Maitland, 407-298-4650;; Shabbat service, Friday, 7:30 p.m.; Saturday, 9 a.m.; Junior Congregation., 10:00 a.m. Congregation Or Chayim (Rec), Leesburg, 352-326-8745; egrae@; services last Friday of each month at 3:30 p.m. at vari- ous private residences. Congregation Shalom Aleichem (R), 3501 Oak Pointe Blvd., Kis- simmee, 407-935-0064;; Shabbat service, 1st and 3rd Fridays of the month, 8 p.m. Congregation Sinai (C/R), 303 N. S.R. 27, Minneola; 352-243- 5353;; services: everyFriday, 7:30p.m.; Healing Service, first Friday of the month, 7 p.m. Southwest Orlando Jewish Congregation/Ohalei Rivka (C), 11200 S. Apopka-Vineland Rd., Orlando, 407-239-5444; Shabbat service, Friday, 7:30 p.m.; Saturday, 9:30 a.m. Temple Beth E1 (R), 579 N. Nova Rd., Ormond Beach, 386 -677-2484. Temple Beth Shalom (R), P.O. Box 031233, Winter Haven, 813- 324-2882. Temple Beth Shalom (C), 40 Wellington Drive, Palm Coast, 386- 445-3006; Shabbat service, Friday, 8 p.m.; Saturday, 9 a.m. Temple Beth Sholom (C), 5995 N. Wickham Rd. Melbourne, 321-254-6333;; Shabbat services: Friday, 5:50 p.m.; Saturday: 9:30 a.m. Minyan, Tuesday, 7:30 p.m.; Thursday, 10:00 a.m. Temple Beth Shalom (R), 1109 N.E. 8thAve., Ocala, 352-629-3587; Shabbat services: Friday, 8 p.m.; Torah study: Saturday, 10:00 a.m. Temple B'nai Darom (R), 49 Banyan Course, Ocala, 352-624-0380; Friday Services 8 p.m. Temple Israel (C), 50 S. Moss Rd., Winter Springs, 407-647-3055;; Shabbat services: Friday, 7:30 p.m.; Saturday, 9:30 a.m.; Sunday 9:00 a.m. Temple Israel (R), 7350 Lake Andrew Drive, Melbourne, 321- 631-9494. Temple Israel (C), 1400 S. Peninsula Ave., Daytona Beach, 386- 252-3097; Shabbat service, 8 p.m.; Saturday: 9 a.m. Temple Israel of DeLand (R), 1001 E. New York Ave., DeLand, 386-736-1646; Friday Shabbat service, 7 p.m. Temple L'Chayim (R), 4420 South Rd. 27, Ste. 4, Clermont, 352- 978-6357; Temple Shalom (formerly New Jewish Congregation) (R), 13563 Country Road 101, Oxford, 352-748-1800; www.newjewishcongrega-; Shabbat services: Friday, 7:30 p.m.; last Saturday of the month, 9:30 a.m. Temple Shalom of Deltona (R/C), 1785 Elkcam Blvd., Deltona, 386-789-2202; Shabbat service; 7:30 p.m.; Saturday: 10 a.m. Temple Shir Shalom of Oviedo (R) Services held in the EPICenter at University Carillon United Methodist Church, 1395 Campus View Court, Oviedo, 407-366-3556,; Shabbat services: three Fridays each month, 7:30 p.m. Traditional Congregation of Mount Dora (T) Mount Dora, 352- 735-4774;; services: second and fourth Fridays and Saturday of the month. (R) Reform (C) Conservative (O) Orthodox(Rec) Reconstructionist